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Creator Name: Iatmul
Creator Nationality: Asian; Pacific; Melanesian; New Guinean; Papuan
Creator Role: Sculptor
Creator Name-CRT: Iatmul
Title: Kundu Drum
View: front
Creation Start Date: 1900
Creation End Date: 1999
Creation Date: 20th century
Object Type: Decorative Arts and Utilitarian Objects
Materials and Techniques: wood, rope
Dimensions: H.8-1/2 x W.26-3/4 x D.6-1/2 in.
AMICA Contributor: The Minneapolis Institute of Arts
Owner Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA
ID Number: 98.37.3
Credit Line: The Ethel Morrison Van Derlip Fund

The crocodile is an extremely important ancestor to the Iatmul of the middle Sepik River region. The Iatmul believe they were spawned by a huge crocodile, and the land they occupy is the back of this animal. The open-ended design carved into both sides of this hand drum represent the gaping jaws of two crocodiles, signifying the two major components of the cosmos: the sky and the earth. In this example, the handle, which links the two worlds, is also a crocodile.

Kundu drums are used to provide accompaniment to clan songs that are sung at ceremonies, funerals, the inauguration of a new canoe, and at the completed construction of a clan house. The drum's sound is closely associated with the supernatural as it represents the voices of spirits and ancestors.

AMICA ID: MIA_.98.37.3
Measurement Unit: in
AMICA Library Year: 2001
Media Metadata Rights: ?The Minneapolis Institute of Arts

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